Father’s Return from War. Topics

Father went to war. Then he died in the war. When our neighbors found out the news, they looked at us, Mother and me, with pity. Later on they found out that Father did not die but he had eloped with a woman from over there where the war had taken him. This is why he never came back. Then the neighbors started looking at us, Mother and me, as if we were traitors. Contemptuously and repugnantly. Although I wasn’t at fault, we also started feeling as if we were traitors. Let us be ashamed. After a while, Father was proved to have died fighting heroically. We were even sent a decoration for him. From that day on neighbors started looking at us with hatred. And this is how things stand today as well.

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Father went to war. When the war was over, the fathers of the other children started coming home. They brought various things for their children, from the front or from the place where they had been prisoners. Children played with these things. They were helmets, tins with eagles on their handles, badges, handcuffs, guns that shot shells with round tops, steel cigarette holders. After a long while Father came back from war. He brought along some objects and he gave them to me to play with them. They were a fan handle, two teacups, so small one would think they were toys, and a pair of sticks with which he taught me to eat rice. I have never been sure that Father fought in the right war.

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Father went to war. He was a timid and clumsy man, and he loved music. I knew he would not hold on for long. He knew it as well. And so it was. After only a couple of days, the Vietnamese took him prisoner. They made him play Russian roulette. Father was a very unlucky man. On the second or the third attempt, the bullet chamber happened to be in front of the barrel. He shot and the bullet passed through his head. When he came back from the war, Father showed me that bullet.

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Father went to war. I heard that he had been taken prisoner. Years went by. One day a strange man came to our house. He had stayed in the same prison camp as my father. They had been together years on end. We did not know anything about him. He knew everything about us, about me and Mom. Absolutely everything! Before dying, Father had told him every detail hundreds of times. That man stayed with us. He married Mother and became my father. It wasn’t at all difficult for us, for he even knew where to find some objects that we had thought lost. He told us that as Father told him his stories, he had got so used to them that he felt he could not have lived without us.

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Father went to war. After a while he wrote to us. He was OK and in good health. He kept on fighting. He could not give us an address where we could write to him. The front kept moving. We shouldn’t worry. He would write to us when he could. This is what he did. The war was over. The other children’s fathers came home. Father did not come home. We kept on receiving the usual postcards where he wrote to us that he was OK and kept on fighting. He did not give us an address where we could answer him. I became an adult. Mother had died a long time ago. The world was at peace. Yesterday I received a postcard from Father. I was glad that he was in good health. I am wondering how he can keep on fighting at his age.

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Father went to war. I was surprised because our country was not at war with anybody. One day, Mother got a big cardboard letter. A big black car came and took us to a park where a flame was burning. The President gave a speech. Then he put his hand on my shoulder and told me that Father was a brave soldier who died for the liberty of our planet. It was true. As you know, the Earth could not be conquered.

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Father went to war. The enemy caught him. They asked him to convert. Some prisoners converted and were enrolled in the enemy army. Others refused and were killed on the spot. This is what history says as well. Father chose a middle way. He said he wanted to learn more about their faith in order to see if it was better to convert or die for his faith. The commander of the camp agreed. He gave Father some books. He asked his soldiers’ priest to teach him and sometimes even to discuss with him certain difficult questions.  From time to time the priest asked him what he had decided. Father answered that he was still not sure. He wanted to study more. The war was over. But Father only returned home for a few days. Then he went back to his former enemies’ country, to his studies. He wrote a lot of books on comparative religion, history, and philosophy.  He became a member of several academies. In the speech he gave when he was awarded the Nobel Prize, he said that he had still not decided what faith was better or more adequate for his thinking. But in any case, when it is about religion, one should not make hasty decisions.

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Father went to war.  In a few days he returned home. He told us that the war was over. Although I was a child, I understood this was absurd. Everybody knew that the war was still going on. I asked him and he answered me that from his point of view the war was over. Some were suspicious. They suspected he was a deserter. He had to show them the document which said that he had been sent back home officially. Once I asked him, “If the war is over, who is the winner?” He answered me shortly, “Us!” Indeed, after a while the war was over and we won. This story was repeated several times. As soon as a war broke out, Father was away for a few days.  Finally, he came back home relaxed, saying it was over. And who won? We did. Father died during a peaceful respite. Later on I realized that there were people who could decide the outcome of a war in only a few days.

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Father went to war. He was a professional warrior. A great warrior. Weapons held no secrets for him.  He used the mace, the broadsword, the saber, the spear and the halberd equally well. Our neighbors were warriors as well. They knew that if they had joined the enemy armies, Father would not have spared them. This was obvious, they were warriors. The other children also understood this and they played with me with great pleasure. But their mothers did not like me at all, although Father hadn’t killed any of their husbands yet. One day one of these women ran into me on the street and she pinched me maliciously. Then I shouted at her in my squeaky voice, “My father will kill your man.” Everybody heard me. Father was at war then. The third day, the husband of the woman who had pinched me started quarreling with Father. Father was the commander of his brigade. When he heard that people said bad words about him like that, out of the blue, without any reason, Father took his cudgel and split his head. Things have been going on like that since then. Father is a bit angry for I have not chosen to follow his career. Father is a bit sorry that we did not step into his shoes. Still, he is proud of me. He was a great warrior but I am a much more renowned wizard.